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marketing Pros and Cons of Creating a TV Pilot vs a Movie

I'm writing a scifi script that will shoot later this year. It's about 80 minutes, so barely feature length but could also work as a TV pilot. I have several other treatments written that could exist in this same universe, somewhat like Xfiles.

I'm wondering if I should create and market it as a movie, with potential sequels, or a TV pilot? I know that's probably not a simple question to answer, but I thought others may have some insight, or perhaps had to make that same decision themselves?

I chose marketing for the prefix but this could probably fit under several categories. Thank you in advance for any feedback.
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
NYC
Happy Joel Mchale GIF by ABC Network
 

mlesemann

Staff Member
Moderator
I do know people who shot a pilot episode, it didn't get picked up, then they went back a year later to shoot more footage for a feature.

So if you want to do a pilot and market it for someone else to develop the rest of the series, I suggest:

1. Shoot the additional footage that you'd need for the feature and save it in case you want to re-cut later.

2. Edit and market the pilot in hopes that you can get support for the full series.

2a. But make sure that you have a full series bible ready to accompany it.

3. Be prepared to re-edit into a feature because you want to get something that you can release to the world. REALLY. SERIOUSLY. Don't shoot something and then have only the crew and a few festivals see it.
 

directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
Shoot your movie later this year as it is. 80 minutes is fine. Then show it
to people. If you run into a distributor who tells you it's barely feature
length but could also work as a TV pilot. Smile and show your other scripts
and - as miesemann says - your series bible.

If you find a distributor who likes it as it is you can pitch sequels...
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
NYC
One thing I would do is have the script looked at by a professional if you are not. You say it is 80 pages but if it is formatted incorrectly, or missing slugs, or descriptions, or even pieces of the story, your 80 page script could really be 96. Or it could be 70! But it may be worth having it looked at. :)

Heck, you could be using the wrong font size and gain 5 pages! Not sure how experienced you are.
 
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